John Gibson.

History of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present online

. (page 114 of 218)
Online LibraryJohn GibsonHistory of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present → online text (page 114 of 218)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

On July 3d, Sunday, he arrived at Wright's
Ferry at 6 o'clock in the evening. A great
demonstration was given in his honor at Lan-
caster the next day, the Fourth of July. He
was presented with an address by the burges-
ses, to which his excellency responded.

The Pennsylvania Herald and York Gen-
eral Advertiser, a weekly paper, published in
York in its issue of July 6, 1791, contains
the following account of this visit:

Saturday last the President of the United States
arrived here from Mount Vernon, on his way
to Philadelphia. His arrival, which was about
3 o'clock, was announced by the ringing of bells.
The Independent Light Infantry Company, com-
manded by Capt. Hay, paraded, and being drawn
up before his Excellency's lodging, fired fifteen
rounds. At night there were illuminations, and
every other demonstration of joy.

The next morning his Excellency was waited
upon by the Chief Burgess and the principal in-
habitants, and the following address was presented
to him, after which he attended service at the Epis-
copal Church, and then proceeded on his journey.
He was accompanied as far as Wright's Ferry by a
number of the principal inhabitants.

To THE President or the United States.

Sir: With sentiments of the most perfect esteem
and attachment, the citizens of the borough of
York beg leave to present to you their sincere con-
gratulations on your safe arrival here, after an ex-
tensive tour through that country, which owes so
much to your brave and prudent exertions in war,
and to your wise and just administration in peace.

We cordially join in the general satisfaction and
joy which all the citizens of America feel in seeing
you, and in those universal sentiments of regard to
your person and veneration for your character.


■whicli dictate the addresses that in various expres-
sions have been offered to you. We join in the
general satisfaction that every friend to human
happiness must feel on finding that the people of
the United States do now show a great and convinc-
ing proof to all the world that freedom and good
government are perfectly compatible. And that a
first Magistrate, unanimously chosen by the people,
may at once possess their utmost veneration and
most hearty regard.

We wish you a safe return to the seat of govern-
ment, and do sincerely unite with the millions of
America in praying that the Supreme Governor of
the Universe may long continue a life which he
has so eminently distinguished, in preserving and
securing the best rights and happiness of the citi-
zens of this greatly favoured country.


To THE Citizens op the Borough of York:

Oentlemen: I receive your congratulations with
pleasure, and I reply to your flattering and affec-
tionate expressions of esteem with sincere and
grateful regard.

The satisfaction which you derive from the con-
geniality of freedom with good government, which
is clearly evinced in the happfness of our highly
favored country, at once rewards the patriotism
that achieved her liberty, and gives an assurance of
its duration.

That your individual prosperity may long con-
tinue among the proofs which attest the national
welfare is my earnest wish.

George Washington.

Maj.-Gen. St. Clair, accompanied by vis-
count Malartie, his aidde-camp, passed
through York from the West on January ]7,
1792, on his way to the capital of the Unit-
ed States. He was then Governor of the
Western Territory, including what is now
Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, etc., and major-
general and commander-in-chief of the Amer-
ican Army, a short time before he had
been defeated by the Indians in southwestern

Gen. Anthony Wayne soon afterwards
passed westward through York to the "Ohio
Frontier" and defeated the Indians there.
It was then that, he said that if they were
hostile to the whites any time in the future he
would rise from his grave to light them.

Mons. Sprrurier, the prime minister of the
French Government, passed through York,
travelling in a chaise, during the early part
of February, 1815. He remained over night
with Col. George Spangler. While here he
stated that he had fled his country during
the Napoleonic wars, which were still in prog-
ress. He considered himself happy to be
absent from his country.

Visit of La Fayette. — Early in the year
1825, an event occurred which revived the
patriotic feelings of the ximerican people,
and thrilled them with emotions of gratitude.
It was the visit of La Fayette to this country,

and the scenes of his youthful heroism, in
behalf of liberty. On Saturday, January 29,
1825, at 9 o'clock in the evening, he "^ar-
rived in York, and passed on to Harrisburg,
accompanied by Gen. Jacob Spangler and
Adam King, of York. They crossed the
river at York Haven. He returned
Wednesday, the 2d of February, and " our
people were gratified with an opportunity of
giving to their early friend and protector a
reception, of pouring forth overflowing
hearts of gratitude and welcome to hi
whose name is a passport to the heart of
every American." Ho arrived at 4 o'clock
at the first turnpike gate, where he was met
by the military and citizens. The
ascended a barouche, drawn by gray
and the procession entered the town, which
was brilliantly illuminated, and all the bells
ringing, moved up George Street, to the
court house, and through the principal streets
of the town to his place of lodging, at Mc-
Grath's hotel. A dinner was there given to
him, to which 100 gentlemen sat down. To
the following toast he responded:

La Fayette— We love him as a man, hail him as a
deliverer, revere him as a champion of freedom, a
welcome him as a guest.

To which he gave:

The town of York— the seat of the American
union in our most gloomy times— May its citizens
enjoy in the same proportion their share of Amer-
ican prosperity.

He reviewed the military of the town the
next day, and then left for Baltimore. The
military companies at that time were, Capt.
Nes' Artillery, Capts. Small, Barnitz, Fry-
singer and Stuck's Infantry, and Capt.
Smith's Rifles.

The remains of Zachary Taylor, who died
while president of the United States, passed
through York, October 25, 1850. They were
taken through Columbia, Middletown and
Harrisburg to Pittsburgh, and from thence
by steamer to Louisville, Ky. "OldWhitey,"
his famous horse which he used during the
Mexican War, was in the front car of the

Maj. Andre, the noted English spy, while
a prisoner, was in York for a short time dur-
ing the Revolution. He was at Carlisle for
a time; was transferred through York ta
Lancaster, where he was kept for several

The remains of President Garfield passed
through York on a special train in 1881.

Military. — The Americans generally are a,
military people, and ever ready to obey the
maxim of Washington: "In time of peace pre-
pare for war." The militia of Pennsylvania


have always been the subject of appropriate
legislation, and the militia of York County
were well organized in brigades, regiments and
battalions, with field and commissioned olfi-
cers of every grade. In order to keep up a
martial spirit and teach discipline, the legis-
lature, by the act of July 11, 1822, required
the militia to be trained and paraded in com-
panies on the first Monday of May, and in
battalions on the second Monday of May,
called the muster and battalion days. It
did not matter at the muster what arms were
brought to the field, whether the broomstick,
or the cornstalk, or a combination of either
with small fire arms, or the genuine musket.
This militia training was continued, to the
delectation of the exempt, and of urchins,
until it was abolished by law in 18-t2.

In the meantime the true military spirit of
some citizens induced the organization of
companies, uniformed, armed and equipped,
who would have resented the term militia, if
applied to them. These were thoroughly
exercised in the manual of arms and regi-
mental maneuvers; not only exciting admira-
tion, but constituting that great home growth
of military power which made the American
volunteer so efficient in war. The companies
above named iudicate the military spirit of

The year following the visit of La Payette
was the semi-centennial anniversary of
American independence, and the 4th of Ju-
ly, 1826, was celebrated by a memorable
military and civic demonstration; its enthu-
siasm inspired by that visit, as well as by
the attainment of fifty years of independence
to the nation, and the yet recent results to the
national glory in what was then called the
late war, wherein our soldiers were matched
with veterans of European wars. The ora-
tion on the occasion was delivered by Hon.
Charles A. Barnitz.

The funeral of Capt. Michael H. Spangler,
on the 9th of September, 1834, was attended
by the officers of the Ninety-fourth regiment,
P. M., by the survivors of the "York Volun-
teers," aod by the following volunteer com-
panies of the borough:

The "Washrngton Artillerists," commanded by
Capt. Jacob Upp, Jr.

"The Pennsylvaaia Volunteers," commanded
by Capt. John Evans.

"The Citizen Guards," commanded by Capt.
Samuel Hay.

"The National Greys," commanded by Capt.
Ale.xaader H. Barnitz.

"The York Rangers," commanded by Capt.
Samuel E. Clement.

During the year 1839, the York military
paid a visit to Baltimore, which was returned

I by the Independent Blues of that city, on the
4th of July, in the same year. The Balti-
moreans considered themselves treated with
so much kindness, attention and hospitality
by the citizens of York, that they were
prompted to make some acknowledgement;
and, on the 31st of August, 1839, the Inde-
pendent Blues presented a splendid United
States flag to the volunteer companies of York.
That beautiful flag was in the possession of
Gen. George Hay, and was frequently sus-
pended in front of his residence on patriotic
occasions. The material of the flag is of the
finest silk; the head of the staff is a spear of
massive silver, elegantly chased with two
silver tassels. On the head is the following

"Presented by the Independent Blues to
the York Volunteers, August, 1839, as a
mark of esteem for the unbounded hospital-
ity extended to them dtiring their visit, July
4, 1839."

It was presented on the 31st of August in
front of the White Hall Hotel, in the pres-
ence of the military and a concourse of citi-
zens, by a committee of the "Blues," and
accepted on behalf of the soldiers by Hon.
Charles A. Barnitz. The companies in York
at that time were the Washington Artiller-
ists, Capt. Upp, the Washington Blues,
Capt. Barnitz, the York, Penn., Rifles, Capt.
Hay, and a company of horse, the Washing-
ton Troop, Capt. Garretson; the admirable
bearing and drill of which companies many
well remember.

An incident that may be noticed in the
year 1841 was the removal of the remains of
President Harrison, passing through York on
the way to North Bend, under a large escort
of military from Washington and Baltimore.
The citizens of York manifested deep feel-
ing on the occasion. The military and civic
associations of all kinds joined the passing
escort, the entire pageant was one of the
most solemn character and is strongly im-
pressed upon the minds of all who partici-
pated in it. on account of the occasion itself,

j as well as the apprehended momentous polit-
ical results of the untimely decease of the
new president who held his office but one
short month.

On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday,

j August 23, 24 and 25, 1841, there was an en-

1 campment of military on the York common,
at which there were seventeen companies
present from different ~ parts of the State.
Maj. Hambrightof Lancaster, an experienced
military commander, was commandant by
invitation, and reviewed the troops, and also
organized new companies. A Lancaster book


of biography says, "it was the finest military
display in the State." There were present
companies from Baltimore City. The York
County companies were the Susquehanna
Rifles, Capt. Druck. of Wrightsville; the
Dover Artillery, Capt. Worley; the Independ-
ent Blues, Capt. Bott, West Manchester; the
Jackson Greys, Capt. McAbee, Shrewsbury;
the Hopewell Rifles, Capt. Smith; the York
Pennsylvania Rifles, Capt. Hay; the AVash-
ington Blues, Capt. Barnitz; the Washington
Artillej-ists, Capt. Upp. Lieut. Alex. Hay
was aid-de-camp to the commanding officer.
There was present, Gen. Diller, adjutant-gen-
eral of the State. On Wednesday the troops
were reviewed by his excellency Gov. Porter,
who headed the parade in full uniform on
horseback. In the year 1841, Col. Thomas
Jameson was brigade inspector. There was
at this time a company of cavalry in York,
called the York County Troop.

The election of officers of the militia took
place on the first Monday of June every
seven years. The election of 1842, held
June fi, resulted as follows: brigadier-gen-
eral, Albert C. Ramsay; First Brigade, Fifth
Division, York and Adams Counties; Ninety-
fourth Regiment P. M., colonel, Daniel A.
Stillinger; lieutenant-colonel, Andrew W.
Spangler; majors, John Eppley and Michael
Gohn; Sixty-fourth Regiment, P.M., colonel,
John M. Anderson; lieutenant -colonel, Ed-
mund Connellee; majors, Thomas S. William-
son and Samuel Gilbert; Twenty-fifth Regi-
ment, P. M., colonel Jacob S. Bear; lieuten-
ant-colonel, Joseph Hartman ; majors, Samuel
Eisenhart and Daniel Miller. Chanceford
Battalion, major, George S. Murphy.

On the 15th of July. 1844, there was a
call for volunteers from York for the suppres-
sion of the great Native American riot in
Philadelphia. The three companies of York
already mentioned, the Washington Artiller-
ists, the Washington Blues and York, Penn. .
Rifles, together with companies from the
county, in all 3,000 men, under the command
of Gen. A. C. Ramsay, marched as far as
Wrightsville but retm-ned the same day.
The report of the auditor-general, in 1845,
gives the expense to the State by the Phila-
delphia riots at «45.252.72. The York
County troops cost $7,367.50, and there was
paid to the railroad company for transporta- ^
tion, $512.20. ■

This adventure, brief as it was, is remark-
able for the expense it occasioned. Though .
our troops were not required to suppress the
riot, there was bloodshed in Philadelphia be-
fore quiet was restored.
[£ After the return of Thomas A. Ziegle from

the Mexican war, in 1849, he raised a mili-
tary company called the Worth Infantry,
which was celebrated for its proficiency in
drill. Col. Thomas A. Ziegle, whose name is
intimately associated with the military his-
tory of York, was born September 8, 1824.
He graduated at the Pennsylvania College,
Gettysburg, studied law with James E.
Buchanan, Esq., and was admitted to the bar
May 28, 1850. His great predilection for
military affairs, absorbed a considerable por-
tion of his time, and he attained great pro-
ficiency in the discipline of the men and corps
under his command. His record daring the
late war is given in the general history. The
Worth Infantry and the York, Penn., Rifles
were for many years the military companies
of York. The latter had disbanded, but a
company was organized under the same title
in 1860, with some of the members of the
old corps. The names of the officers are
given in the history of the war.

Of the general officers of the Fourth
Division, P. M., elected, may be mentioned
Gens. Jacob S. Stahle, George Hay and A.
Hiestand Glatz.

In the year 1860, the brigade inspector
was Daniel A. Stillinger. On the 3d of
September, in that year, there was an encamp-
ment, under the general orders of the adju-
tant general of the commonwealth, of the
uniformed volunteers of Pennsylvania, called
Camp Patterson, held at York, which con-
tinued until Saturday, the 8th of September.
Maj.-Gen. William H. Keim v?as command-
ing officer. The tents were pitched on the
common. Two field pieces, a six and an
eighteen-pounder which were then captured
at Cerro Gordo, were there.

The camp consisted of seventeen compan •
ies— 766 men. The National Rifles of Wash-
ington, the Worth Infantry, Capt. Thomas
A. Ziegle; the Washington Guards, Lewis-
bery.Capt. John Crull, the York Rifles, Capt.
John W. Schall; the Marion Rifles, Hanover,
Capt. H. Gates Myers; the Hanover Infantry,
Capt. J. M. Baughman, and companies
from other parts of the State, were present.
Of the officers present were E. C. Wilson,
adjutant-general; Lieut. A. N. Shipley, of
the Third United States Infantry; acting
assistant- adjutant-general; Maj.-Gen. Kim-
mell, of Frederick, Md. ; Brig.-Gen. I.
C. Wynkoop, Brig. Gen, Bartram A. Shaeffer,
of Lancaster; Maj.-Gen. George Hay, of

York. Ther

e were gene

rades, in one

of which all the surviving soldiers of the
war of 1812-14, of the neighboring towns

This was the last demonstration of its kind.



The next year the war breaking out, all the
military skill and experience available in the
country was required to save the Union, and
the noble response of this community has
been recorded. After the war several mili-
tary organizations were effected without per-
manent success. The organization of the
National Guards of Pennsylvania, in 1870,
has created a system by which the active
militia are enlisted in volunteer companies
to serve a limited period — five years. The
York City Greys, Capt. E. Z. Strine, is
attached to the National Guards, from York,
as Company A, Eighth Regiment. The
Wrightsville Greys, Capt. Frank J. Magee,
is Company I, Eighth Regiment. Capt.
Magee is the colonel of the regiment, hav-
ing been elected in 1885.

e.xertious on the part of our executive to conciliate
the French, and restore that harmony and mutual
confidence between the two republics, which for-
merly subsisted; and althoujrh we regret that all
those endeavors have been unsuccessful, we enjoy a
consolation that wisdom with rectitude, energy 'with
moderation, has eminently marked the steps of our
government in all its concerns with foreign nations;
that a continuance of peace is the first object of out
governmeat, next to the preservation of its dignity
and independence. Under this conviction and the
fullest confidence that a strict regard to national
justice as well as national honor will continue
as it hitherto has been prevalent in our coun-
cils, we hesitate not to declare that, whenever
the insolence, violence and aggressions of other
nations shall compel our government to resist-
ance, we are united in one sentiment— that of
supporting its measures with all our energy. May
that Superintending Power which governs the uni-
verse, continue to direct all your measures; that
Power to which we ever wish to appeal at every
crisis of our national affairs.


The Pennsylvania Herald of April 25,
1798, contains the following:

York, April 18, 1798.

A number of the respectable inhabitants of the
borough of York, and its vicinity, assembled at the
court house, on Monday evening, to take into con-
sideration the measures parsued by the Executive of
the United States, with regard to the French
Republic. John Edie in the chair.

The following resolutions were unani-
mously passed:

Resolved, That this meeting highly approve of
the instructions, given by the President of the
United States, to the late Envoys Extraordinary to
the French republic.

Resolved, That John Hay, Sr., James Kelly,
Conrad Laub, David Cassat, William Ross, Frede-
rick Yonce and Christopher Lauman, be a commit-
tee to draught an address, to be presented by the
chairman to the President of the United States,
expressing the entire concurrence of this meeting
in the measures he has adopted, and the zeal mani-
fested for the honor and interests of the United
States; and also its fullest confidence in his in-
tegrity and unremitting zeal for the public good.

Resolved, That the proceedings of this meeting
be publi-shed.

Signed by order of the meeting.

John Edie, Chairman.
D.wiD Cassat, Secretary.

In pursuance of the resolutions above
stated, the committee prepared the following
address, a copy of which was sent by the
Chairman to the President of the United

To His Excellency, Johs Adams, President op
THE United States.
Sir: We, the inhabitants of the borough of
York, and its vicinity, knowing it to be our privilege
and conceiving it our duty on some occasions to ex-
press our sense of public measures, have convened
for the purpose of considering your official conduct,
as far as it stands connected with the French
republic. We have seen with pleasure. Sir, in your
instructions to the late envoys extraordinary, as
well as in other parts of your administration, the
sincerest desire, accompanied by the m

THE president S ANSWER.

AND ITS Vicinity, in the State ■ op Penn-

Gentlemen: The independent spirit of this
manly address from the inhabitants of the borough
of York and its vicinity, as it is conformable to the
exigencies of the times, and comes from a place
where I had once some general acquaintance, ie
peculiarly agreeable to me.

In preparing the instructions for our Ent'oys
to the French Republic, I indulged a pacific, iisdeed,
a friendly conciliatory dispositon toward Pranee, ae
far as the independence of this nation, the dignity
of its government, justice of other nations, and
fidelity to our own indubitable rights and essential
interests would permit. The general coaeurrenee
with me, in opinion, upon this occasion, as far ag
there has been opportunity to know the senti-
ments of the public, and your approbation in par-
ticular, has given me great satisfaction. The con-
fidence you express in the wisdom and rectitude,
energy and moderation of the government, in all its
concerns with foreign nations, is my consolation ae
well as 3'ours.

After years of depredation and cruelties, in
open violation of the law of nations, and ia con-
tempt of solemn treaties, have been borne, without
even tolerating the means of self-preservation or
the instruments of self-defense — the olive branet
has been spurned, and ambassadors of peace aniJ
friendship repeatedly rejected with scorn.

Can still deeper humiliation be demanded ot
this country?

I most cordially unite with you in your supplica-
tions to that Power which rules over all, that the
measures of the United States may be directed by
His wisdom, and that you, my fellow citizens, may
be ever under Hij benevolent protection.

John Ad.\ms
Phila.. April 21, 1798.


An act of assembly, passed March 30,
1793, authorized the establishment of the
Bank of Pennsylvania, with the main office
in Philadelphia, and the privilege of estab-
lishing branch oiJQces in Lancaster, York and
Reading, or such other places as might be
expedient. The only branch x>ffiee£


■established were at Lancaster and Pittsburgh,
until a supplement to the original charter
incorporating the State Bank, was passed
March 8, 1809, at which time the State was
divided into eight banking districts, each
district to be allowed a bank. On the 21st
of March, 1814, a general banking act was
passed by the general assembly, authorizing
the State to be divided into twenty-seven
districts, with forty-two banks. The county
of York was made a district, and authorized
to establish a bank, to be called the York
Bank, which soon after went into operation,
Hnd was the only York bank chartered until

The York National Bank. — This the oldest
financial institution in Y'ork has maintained
its reputation for thorough reliability during
a period of seventy-one years. It was estab-
lished in 1814, with David Gassatt, president,
and John Schmidt, cashier, with a capital of
^100, 000. In 1850 its capital was increased
to $500,000. In 1864 it took a new charter
under the national banking act. The bank
building occupies one of the old landmarks
of the town, now changed into a substantial
and handsome three-story brick building
with bank offices, and also is the residence of
the cashier. The late Henry Welsh was
president of this institution for many years.
The directors of this bank for 1885 are as
follows: G. Edward Hersh, president; Alfred
Ofartman, Jacob Hay, William Wallace,
Edmund Butter, John K. Ziegler, Smyser
Williams, David Small, John C. Schmidt, W.

Online LibraryJohn GibsonHistory of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present → online text (page 114 of 218)